Phase Two of the Ad Campaign
Last February, during a DC City Council Hearing, several brave Washington, DC commuters shared their experiences of being sexually harassed on the Metro buses and trains. At the same time, many of us – led by Collective Action for Safe Spaces – pressured the Metro into taking action on this issue (with lots of support from area blogs). Thankfully, the DC transit authority responded to the stories and campaigning. Among the many changes they’ve made, launched an anti-harassment public service announcement campaign in April.
At first the ads were on buses and subway platforms. Now they’re also on Metro cars and tonight, on my way home from work, I looked up and saw one! New ads will continue to be rolled out every few months to keep the content fresh.
I am very excited that commuters can see this ad and know that sexual harassment isn’t tolerated on the Metro system and that there is a way to report incidents that happen.
The Reports Are In
Here’s another piece of news about the campaign — One change we suggested the transit authority make was to start tracking ALL types of sexual harassment, not just types deemed criminal offenses (e.g. sexual assault). They agreed to do this and even created an online form to make it easier for people to report harassment incidents.
Recently, they released information about the number of reports they’ve received through September: there were 78 reports, including 39 incidents that were criminal. It’s impossible to compare numbers to the previous year since the tracking criteria and system is different but we now have a starting point to which we can compare future numbers.
I think this is all great progress and I’m really grateful I live in an area where I can look up during my commute and know that action is being taken to make the Metro system safer for everyone.Share on Facebook